Moreau scored twice to cap Edmonton’s franchise-record five goals in a span of 5:38 and the Oilers routed the reeling Phoenix Coyotes 7-2.
Edmonton’s seven goals and the five-goal margin of victory were season highs.
“Mentally it’s such a relief because of the grind we’ve been going through,” said Moreau, who later added an assist. “Those one-goal games, on the bench mentally it’s hard. You need a game like that to have fun. There’s not so much stress on you.”
Ryan Smyth, Shawn Horcoff, Adam Oates and Fernando Pisani had a goal and an assist apiece for the Oilers, who moved within seven points of idle Los Angeles for the Western Conference’s final playoff spot. Marc-Andre Bergeron added a goal and Ales Hemsky had a pair of assists for Edmonton.
“It was nice looking up a the clock at a 6-1 lead with four minutes left (in the second),” Horcoff said. “We’re so used to fighting for a win in the third period, it was a good feeling to get that.”
Jeff Taffe and Jan Hrdina scored for the Coyotes, winless in two games under interim coach Rick Bowness. Phoenix, 2-10-2-2 in its last 14 outings and a Western Conference-worst 10-14-5-3 at home, has allowed 20 goals in its last four games.
“After their third goal it really killed us,” Taffe said. “It got a bad bounce, kinda flattened and went through Booshy’s five-hole. It’s kind of the bounces we’ve been getting lately.”
Taffe tied the game 1-all with a power-play goal at 7:07 of the second period, but then the onslaught began. Pisani and Oates scored 52 seconds apart to give the Oilers a 3-1 lead. Horcoff made it 4-1 at 13:39 of the period, ending goalie Brian Boucher’s night with a one-timer from the left faceoff circle off a long lead pass from Pisani.
Moreau finished the Oilers’ record run by beating Jean-Marc Pelletier twice within a span of 1:32—his first goal coming on the first shot Pelletier faced—as Edmonton opened a 6-1 lead.
“It was a real feel-good game,” Edmonton coach Craig MacTavish said. “It seems we’ve worked hard enough that we deserved a game like that. We probably have deserved more of them.”
The Oilers finished the period with the five goals on just nine shots. Boucher, pulled for the second time in four starts, allowed four goals on 18 shots.
“We’ve got to control that,” Taffe said. “We can’t let it slide like that. They score one, you’ve got to come back with a couple of great shifts to get the momentum back. We weren’t able to do that.”
Edmonton’s previous mark was set Oct. 24, 1996, when the Oilers scored five goals over a span of 6:44 in an 8-2 win against St. Louis.
Smyth opened the scoring at 8:02 of the first period, redirecting a shot by Radek Dvorak past Boucher. Bergeron made it 7-1 with at 4:44 of the third period.
Hrdina cut Edmonton’s lead to 7-2 on a wrist shot from the top of the leftfaceoff circle.
Moreau’s two-goal game was the sixth of his career and the first since Nov. 9, 2002, at New Jersey. Moreau has scored more goals against the Coyotes— 12 in 32 games—than against any other team. … Boucher is 3-10-4 since his NHL-record streak of five straight shutouts ended Jan. 11 against Atlanta. … Pelletier was greeted with a derisive cheer and the scoreboard flashed “great save” on a routine stop with 14:48 left in the game. The crowd booed lustily as Phoenix skated in its own defensive zone to run out the game’s final 10seconds.